Sportsbooks and Sports Leagues Form Official Betting Partnerships

The term official betting refers to any type of wager on a sporting event that is sanctioned by a sports league. Sportsbooks and sports leagues often form natural partnerships that provide numerous benefits to both parties. A primary benefit for sportsbooks is the ability to use official data to power their oddsmaking and live betting products. In return, sports leagues receive additional name-brand recognition and revenue from licensing fees.

While many states have legalized sports betting, only a handful are offering fully-licensed online sportsbooks. This means that if you want to place a bet in Ohio, for example, you must visit an establishment in the state. However, with the right tools, sports governing bodies can work to ensure that fans make responsible wagers and prevent match-fixing and other gambling-related corruption.

In the NFL, for example, players are not allowed to bet on games that they participate in unless they do so from outside the team facility (a rule that led to the suspension of Detroit Lions wide receivers Jameson Williams and Stanley Berryhill). This policy applies to players, coaches, staffers or anyone else affiliated with an NFL club. Players are still permitted to bet on other pro sports and to compete in fantasy football leagues sanctioned by the NFL.

Other sports governing bodies, like the NBA, haven’t declared a public position on sports betting. The NHL, on the other hand, is taking a more proactive approach and has signed sponsorship deals with William Hill and MGM Resorts International that include betting partnerships. The Vegas Golden Knights have become the first NHL team to open a sportsbook in Nevada, and the league is working to develop similar initiatives in other markets.